Nuclear expertise sees Imperial College instruct Burges Salmon

Burges Salmon” />South West firm Burges Salmon has won a beauty parade to become Imperial College London’s legal adviser on nuclear law issues.

The firm won the beauty parade to be Imperial College’s sole adviser on issues relating to the university’s nuclear research reactor at its Silwood Park campus.

The mandate covers a decision to plan in detail for the possible decommisioning of the reactor during the next five to 10 years.

Imperial College runs a legal panel, but the work for the nuclear reactor was put out to tender because of the specialist knowledge required. It is understood that, in addition to Burges Salmon, two more firms sit on Imperial College’s legal roster.

Imperial College’s low-level nuclear reactor is used for teaching and training purposes, but is not used to generate electricity.

Burges Salmon is one of the few firms to have built up a high-profile practice specialising in nuclear law issues. Ian Salter, head of the firm’s nuclear practice unit, believes the firm was well placed to win the contract.

“We were able to demonstrate a knowledgeable understanding of the sector thanks to our work with clients such as the Ministry of Defence and the UK Atomic Energy Authority,” said Salter. “The work is likely to include a mixture of construction contracts as well as environmental and health and safety issues,” he added.